January 18, 2011

Secrets to Sticking With It

Keeping your resolve to be healthy, active and a person of constant improvement can test you in many ways!  Our culture wants the "Secret to Overnight Success!" or "Three Simple Ways To Cheat Your Diet and Still Lose Weight!".  Losing 30 pounds in 3 months is much more appealing to most people than in a year.  When I first started running, it took 5 months to lose a mere 15 pounds!  It was excruciatingly slow!  Having a goal in mind is a good thing, but expecting overnight success is not fair!
I have a few people around me at all times who are attempting the next fad or wave or trend in weight loss, in health inprovement, mostly at the expense of their pocket books and waist lines.  The problem is this:  making weight loss alone  as my goal for me just will not work!  Numbers are an obsession for our culture.  But in reality, to be overall healthy, numbers are just a side effect of overall healthier living, and in much more long term beneficial ways will only change slowly over time.  
The challenge for me in this and perhaps for you who may be starting running, is that my draw for my attention has to become about the enjoyment of change, of taking better care of myself, of resolving through the discomfort of activity into the euphoria of achievement and endorphins!

Here's my recommendation:  ditch the daily weigh - in.  Keep your pocket change.  Put on a pair of runners and run  on  a regular basis, eat good portions and love the investment of health in your life.  Check the numbers occasionally (monthly?) , talk to people who have long-term success in change of health and know your are getting somewhere at your body's own pace.  


Greg said...

Good insight Chad.

While reading your post I just realized for the first time that I'm thinking of exercise as something temporary, to be completed and then abandoned. I think my understanding of and relationship to exercise needs to mature. When I think of a focus on numbers, that becomes the only reason to engage in exercise. When instead I take your suggestion to consider "enjoying" exercise, how I feel, just choosing to be healthier... That has the potential to last (better).

Thanks! Keep up the good posts.

Chad said...

HEy Greg, thats really terrific! The thing is that when we look at the new thing we are doing, which is painful at times, we want it to end!
But making it as part of our routine from now on, keeping in mind that this will now be the new normal, it makes me realize I must be more realistic about my expectation on myself. THanks for the feedback!